At a Feb. 22 Committee of the Whole meeting, the Poynette Village Board was in general agreement to move forward with a pair of ordinance changes within the village.
The first topic of discussion was the possible addition of a stop sign at the intersection of McMillan Road and Academy Street, just west of Village Hall. The topic was brought to the Board by Connor Mellom, who lives in the area, wanting a stop sign for traffic traveling east on McMillan Road as they enter the village.
Mellom sent an email to the village with his concerns, stating that he has seen people “fly around that corner regularly.” With icy, or slippery conditions, Mellom is worried that cars could end up in his yard or hitting his house — where he lives with his wife and 7-month-old child — if drivers are unable to navigate the curve as they merge with Academy Street.
Mellon added that with other children in the neighborhood, concern is for their safety as well, noting that cars are typically going faster than the posted speed of 25 mph.
The Board was in agreement to enter the process of putting a stop sign at the suggested location.
“I see no reason why not to put one there,” Trustee Jerry Burke said.
Trustee Steve Mueller agreed with Mellom on the speed of most cars at that intersection.
“I’ve been around there 20 years, and sometimes people come into town hot,” he said.
The issue will come back to the Board at its March 8 meeting, as it is a change to a village ordinance, requiring a yes/no vote for approval or denial.
There is currently a stop sign for traffic heading south on Academy at the intersection with McMillan, but all traffic veering to the right onto McMillan are not required to stop. Academy street extends to the south about 100 feet beyond its three-way intersection with McMillan.
The Village Board also discussed a change in sewer connection fees as it relates to one bedroom houses and apartment complexes that house one-bedroom units.
The sewer connection fee is currently $1,521 for all developments, expect for those that limit occupancy to two people, with at least one being 55 years of age or older. In that instance, the sewer connection fee is cut in half.
The Board also in in favor of cutting the fee in half for single bedroom homes.
The topic came to light as Corey and Erica Radlund were planning to develop a new 14-unit apartment complex that houses single-bedroom units only. They asked for an exception from the village as the potential fees would’ve hindered their development. Instead of paying $21,294 on sewer connection fees, the Board approved the 50% reduction, costing the Radlunds only 10,647.
Shanks put together a table of what other municipalities in the region charge for a sewer connection fee. Those prices ranged from $79 (Johnson Creek) to $3,400 (Fall River). Johnson Creek has fees totaling $1,910 when adding in parks, public works and water. Poynette’s impact fees for a single housing unit totals $2,815, when including sewer connection. The impact fees are — library ($600), fire station ($451) and parks ($243).
The Board will make a final decision on the sewer connection fee and what to do with the village’s other impact fees (library, parks, and fire station fee) at its March 8 meeting.
Shanks recommends keeping the fire station and park fee as is, while repealing the library fee for the time being, noting that the fee has lost “much of its relevance since 2006,” when the fees were created. The library fee was based on a potential expansion project of the building, which has come and been paid for completely. The library has no planned projects, and the fees would go back to the developer if not used during a certain timeframe. If the library develops a capital project, the fee can always be reinstated.
The village will have its Spring Clean-up Day on Sat. April 24 at Village Hall. It coincides with the statewide Drug Take Back Day, where the Poynette Police Department will have a collection site for materials to be disposed of in correlation with the Department of Justice.
The only thing of note from the Village Board meeting was in Jodi Bailey’s report of the library. Kelly Anderson was hired as a new part-time employee at the end of January. Also, Bailey noted that 84 participants enrolled in the Winter Reading program — an all-time high in the program’s sixth year.